Osmotic Adjustment in Expanding and Fully Expanded Leaves of Sunflower in Response to Water Deficits
Australian Journal of Plant Physiology
7(2) 181 - 192
Sunflower plants were grown in large volumes of soil and slowly water-stressed by withholding water. The tissue water relationships of leaves at various stages of stress and of leaves of equivalent well watered controls were studied by the pressure chamber technique. Plants were stressed either when leaf 17 was expanding or when it was fully expanded. When expanding leaves reached a moderate level of stress (predawn leaf water potential of -0.9 MPa), the osmotic potentials at full turgor and zero turgor were lower than the control values by 0.1 MPa and 0.2 MPa, respectively. When fully expanded leaves were stressed to a similar degree (predawn leaf water potential of - 1.1 MPa), the osmotic potentials at full turgor and zero turgor were lower than the control values by 0.2 MPa and 0.3 MPa, respectively. The development of more severe stress in the fully expanded leaves was not accompanied by any further osmotic adjustment. However, when the expanding leaves reached a predawn leaf water potential of -2.3 MPa, the values of leaf osmotic potential at full turgor and zero turgor were lower than the values for the well watered plants by 0.4 MPa and 0.6 MPa, respectively. In expanding leaves prestressed to a predawn leaf water potential of -2.3 MPa, the osmotic potential at full turgor was significantly less than the control values for at least 7 days after rewatering. Stress had no effect on the bulk modulus of elasticity. It is concluded that both expanding and fully expanded sunflower leaves show osmotic adjustment.
© CSIRO 1980